November 21, 2020 – 33rd Week in Ordinary Time

“Growing in our faith in the Resurrection and living in holiness and sanctity!”

(Based on Rev 11:4-12 and Lk 20:27-40 – Saturday of the 33rd Week in Ordinary Time – Feast of the Presentation of Blessed Mother Mary)

There is a story of a man who had been afflicted with a terminal disease.

With much fear of death, he sought counselling and help from one of his Christian doctors.

The doctor, was initially lost for words.

He did not know how to console the dying man.

As he was fumbling for an answer, he heard the noise of scratching on his door.

He got the answer for consolation.

“Do you hear that?” he asked his patient, calling his attention to the scratching noise on the door.
“Well!” continued the doctor, “that’s my dog!

I left him downstairs.

But he has become very impatient and has come up, hearing my voice.

He doesn’t have much idea, of what’s happening in here – beyond the door…
… but he knows one thing: ‘That I am here!’

And so, if I open the door now, he would just jump over me, into this room!”

The doctor continued, looking into the eyes of the patients, “Isn’t it the same with our lives?

We don’t have much idea of what lies beyond the Door, but we know that the Master is there!”

This is the Christian Faith: that beyond the Door of this Life, is the Master!

This is the hope of Resurrection!

The Gospel of the Day is an invitation to reinforce our faith and hope in the Resurrection.

The Sadducees who did not believe in the Resurrection, put forth a question of “after-life” to Jesus. (Lk 20: 27-33)

Jesus, Who knows the intentions of all hearts and the craftiness of every mind, spoke…
… of the difference in the nature of life – in this world and in the next
… of His sovereignty over those who have died and those who are alive

Referring to the passage of the Burning Jesus, Jesus proclaims, “… He is not God of the dead, but of the living, for to him, all are alive!” (Lk 20: 38)

This verse of the Lord is one of the direct and easy-to-understand basis…
… for the Catholic teaching and practise of “praying for the dead”.

Many are the times when this noble piety of the Catholics is put into question…

“It is unbiblical to pray for the dead”
“Our prayers have no effect on those who are dead, since it is not our works, but their faith, which saves”
… These are some of the statements said against the Catholic practice of “praying for the dead”

But the Lord very clearly shows, through today’s Gospel…
… that God is the God of all – the living and the dead
… that all are living for Him – even though for us, apparently those who are gone from us, are dead

It is our human experience, that while living on this earth…
… we do seek the help of one another – especially through prayers.

We ask one another’s help and prayers…
… when we are going through a crisis or problem
… when we are struggling through sufferings

Then can’t the same logic be applied to those who have died (who are actually alive in the eyes of God!)
Can’t those who are away from this world – the faithful departed – seek for our help and assistance, in their moments of suffering and struggles?

(For those of us… who may have doubts as to “what kind of suffering do the dead have…”

The Church teaches us …
… Nothing unclean will enter the presence of God in heaven (Rev. 21:27)

While we may die with our mortal sins forgiven, there can still be many impurities in us…
… especially venial sins and the temporal punishment due to sins already forgiven.

Therefore, it is needed to have “purification, so as to achieve the holiness necessary to enter the joy of heaven… “

This is called as “purgatory”.

This purification causes suffering… as a purification that takes place in fire!

The dead – the faithful departed – seek our prayers, for a deliverance from this struggle of sufferings!)

November is a month especially dedicated to pray for the Faithful Departed.

The Church invites her children in this world…

To remember and pray
To offer sacrifices and penances
To lead a life away from sin, in holiness
… for the faithful departed!

Yes, it is our faith and hope in the Resurrection that spurs us…
… to live a life of holiness
… to be zealous in reaching out the message of salvation to all
… to be fervent in our prayers for the suffering who have passed away from us

Let us cease to be a “practical Sadducee” professing belief in the Resurrection only in lips but failing to display this belief by a life of holiness!

It is true that we don’t have much awareness of how the “next life” would be…
… We do fall short of words to explain the nature of the life-to-come or rationally describing “how heaven would be!”
… We may even have our own fears and anxieties in thinking of death or in the parting moments of our loved ones!

But we do know for certain one thing: that we would be one with our Lord- the lover of our soul…
… the fullness of joy
… the supremacy of holiness

Yes, we don’t have much idea of what lies beyond the Door, but we know that the Master is there!

Let us grow in our faith in the Resurrection…
… and let us live a life of holiness and sanctity – that would boldly proclaim this belief to all!

Today we celebrate the Feast of the Presentation of our Blessed Mother Mary.

The Feast of the Presentation of our Blessed Mother is a reminder and a challenge to us to give greater attention to a life of holiness.

It is also a constant reminder for us to “offer ourselves” to the Lord.

We can offer many things to the Lord…
… our talents for His glory

… our possessions for His service

But the greater and the better sacrifice, that the Lord not just wishes, but also demands, is the Offering of our Lives.
… an offering of a faithful life
… an offering of a holy life

Today, as we celebrate the Feast of our Blessed Mamma’s Presentation, may we “give ourselves” wholly to the Lord.

We shall also seek the intercession of our Beautiful Mother, so that, like Her, we too can be wholly belonging to the Lord!

Yes, as little children, holding the Hands of our Blessed, may we cry to the Lord – “For You, Forever!”

Happy Feast of the Presentation of our Blessed Mamma!

God Bless! Live Jesus!


Quotable-quote-a-day-with-St Francis de Sales (SFS) – “How do you love yourself? Is it a love which concerns this life chiefly?

If so, you will desire to abide here forever, and you will diligently seek your worldly establishment.

But if the love you bear yourself has a heavenward tendency…

… you will be ready to go hence, whenever it may please our Lord.

November 20, 2020 – 33rd Week in Ordinary Time

“Ensuring that we carry the bag of holiness and sacredness in our spiritual journey!”

(Based on Rev 10:8-11 and Lk 19:45-48 – Friday of the 33rd Week in Ordinary Time)

A family of four were on a holiday trip – a ten day cruise.

They had a good number of bags with them – 13 in all.

As they were set to enter the ship, loading in all their stuffed baggage, the absent-minded husband remarked, “Oh, I wish I had also taken the white-coloured bag that was kept on our main table!”

The wife, who was pretty exasperated with the large number of bags exclaimed, “What? We already have more than a dozen bags, and you wanted another one?”

The man, sheepishly replied: “Well… our tickets are in that white bag!”

This humorous incident reflects an important dimension of our lives: We often miss out of picking up the right priorities of life!

In our spiritual journey, do we sometimes neglect in carrying the ‘white bag?’ – the bag of holiness and sacredness?

Do we sometimes end up missing out “the sense of the Sacred” in our lives?

The Gospel of the day presents a classic case of this loss of the Sacred Sense.

The Temple of Jerusalem is desecrated by a loss of the Sacred Sense and Jesus seeks to restore it by cleansing the temple.
“Then Jesus entered the temple area and proceeded to drive out those who were selling things” (Lk 19:45)

One of the basic characteristics of religion is the aspect of Sacredness.
God is Holy.

And all matters pertaining to this holy God, has a Sense of the Sacred.

Worship becomes meaningful, when one becomes aware of this Sense of the Sacred.

Preaching becomes powerful, when one is convinced of this Sense of the Sacred.
Liturgy becomes heart-touching, when one acknowledges this Sense of the Sacred.

The Gospel of the Day – the incident of the cleansing of the Jerusalem Temple invites us to make a deep examination…

Is my Worship of God becoming merely external and losing its inner values?
Is my Preaching of God reduced to great talks but devoid of conviction and passion?
Is my Liturgy more a ritualistic and obligatory exercise than truly an experiential one?

If the answer to any of the above questions is a ‘Yes’…
… then we are perhaps losing the Sense of the Sacred.
… then perhaps, the “bag of holiness” is missing in our journey of life.

The Jerusalem Temple was very dear to the faith of the people of Israel.

Worshipping in this temple was the ultimate for the Israelites, in their honouring of God.

At the Passover, Jews from around the world came to the temple to sacrifice to the Lord (Ex. 12:1-28; Lev. 23:4-8).

It was highly impractical to bring sacrificial animals long distances.

So they were made available in the Jerusalem Temple.

Most Jews also paid the temple tax during the Passover.

Since, they came from various places and bore pagan Roman seals, money-changers were there in the temple, to convert the Roman coinage into appropriate currency.

Pagan symbols on Roman money made it unacceptable for Yahweh’s house.

Where there is money, corruption slowly creeps in…!

Pilgrims had to pay exorbitant rates to change money, and sellers exploited those in poverty, overcharging for the poor man’s offering of pigeons and doves (Lev. 5:7).

To make things worse, these merchants set up shop in the Court of the Gentiles, making it useless as a place of prayer due to the hustle and bustle of the buying and the selling of goods..

Though not inherently evil, these practices became occasions for sin.

What started for a noble cause, led to immense corruption!

There began the loss of the “Sense of the Sacred”…

And this is so true in our own lives…

The beginning of the loss of the Sense of the Sacred begins with trivial things.

We allow a little delays and some relaxations in our prayer life…

And suddenly, we find no excitement in spending time in prayer.

We allow laxity and silence and indifference in our relationships…

And suddenly, we find no meaning in many of our relations…

We allow unpreparedness and disinterest to walk into our celebration and participation of Mass…

And suddenly, we find no meaning in the Holy Eucharist.

The loss of the Sense of the Sacred happens in a very subtle and quiet way.

And unless, we remain vigilant and careful, we can lose our way in the spiritual warfare.

It is this reminder and warning that the Lord delivers today, by cleansing the Jerusalem Temple.
“It is written, ‘My house shall be a house of prayer, but you have made it into a den of robbers'” (Lk 19: 46)

Today we have converted many of the places into “dens of robbers”…

Today we have badly defiled the “Sense of the Sacred” in many places…

Cinemas and movies have a heavy stench of vulgarity and indecency.

They rob the society of its ethical culture and moral innocence.

Posters, hoardings and advertisements have become mediums of immorality and offensiveness

They rob its viewers of their principles and convictions in life.

The Internet and new media are badly misused to become snares of promoting life-threatening and life-abusing activities.

They rob its users of their proper purposes & instead addict them to many compulsions & cravings, which are hard to be given up.

Families and communities often become places lacking in genuine love, unity and peace

They rob one of the chance to grow in a spirit of sharing and understanding.

Our bodies are often manipulated with many addictions, improper practises and ungodly behaviours.

They rob the person of the purity and holiness that is engraved deep within.

The Cleansing of the Jerusalem Temple is a strong reminder for us, to check the areas and the manner in which we have lost the Sense of the Sacred…

We complain that the world is becoming more materialistic and less spiritual.
We complain that the Church is becoming more “worldly” and less inspiring.

One of the root problems lies in the fact, that we perhaps losing the “Sense of the Sacred”

Unless we are in awe of the God who has created this beautiful and majestic world, we will continue to abuse and misuse the world.
Unless we are in wonder of the God who has gifted the Church with life-saving sacraments, we will continue to blame the Church and lose precious graces that we can obtain through her.

Let us revive the “Sense of the Sacred”…

Let us cleanse anything which diminishes this “Sense of the Sacred”
Let us become a people who radiate with joy and enthusiasm this “Sense of the Sacred”

In our spiritual journey, may we never neglect or forget to carry the ‘white bag?’ – the bag of holiness and sacredness…
… ‘cos in them contain the tickets to heaven!

God Bless! Live Jesus!


Quotable-quote-a-day-with-St Francis de Sales (SFS) – “Lately I was near the beehives and some of the bees flew onto my face.
I wanted to raise my hand, and brush them off.

‘No,’ said a peasant to me, ‘do not be afraid, and do not touch them. They will not sting you at all, if you touch them they will bite you.’

I trusted him; not one bit me.

Trust me; do not fear these temptations…

… do not touch them; they will not hurt you!”

November 19, 2020 – 33rd Week in Ordinary Time

“Running, in sincere repentance, to the welcoming Motherly Heart of our Beloved God!”

(Based on Rev 5:1-10 and Lk 19:41-44  – Thursday of 33rd Week in Ordinary Time)

Aicha Moussaoui had been up all night, weeping and pacing inside her house…

“I am wounded,” she said.

Moussaoui was enduring a hard time.

She was the mother of an alleged conspirator in terrorist crimes.

Her youngest son, Zacarias Moussaoui, 33, had been accused of plotting with the 9/11 hijackers which killed thousands of Americans at the World Trade Centre.

“For me, it’s as if he had died,” she said of her son…

“I want to see him so I could ask my son: Why? How? Is it true?”

Moussaoui said she “felt like the roof fell on me”

These are painful and heart-wrenching words of a mother who was shattered by the alleged misdeeds of her son.

She expected him to respect and honour her care.

She had brought him up, with much love and affection.
She wanted him to become a responsible person in the society.

But her love was answered with disgrace….

Her expectations shattered by humiliation
Her affections bruised with pain

The heart of a mother is broken when her child strays away from the ways of truth and honesty!

If this is the experience of an earthly mother, how much more will be the pain and suffering of our God, if we stray away from Him…
… Him, Who loves each one of us deeply with a motherly affection?

If a human mother has so much pain, how much more will God, with a motherly heart suffer!

It is this sorrow and grief that is strongly expressed by Jesus in the Gospel of the day.

Jesus laments over the City of Jerusalem.

St Luke records this lamentation of the Lord with a powerfully sentimental verse:
“As Jesus drew near, he saw the city and wept over it” (Lk 19: 41)

Jesus is usually an epitome of great joy and rejoicing.

But this joyful Jesus being made to shed tears shows the gravity of situation.

What made Jesus to shed tears?

The pain and the hurt He experienced because of the ill-response and harsh reaction of His chosen people, Israel, represented by the city of Jerusalem.

God had chosen Israel as His people.

Out of all the civilizations on the earth, He chose them as His beloved.
… through them He promised that the Saviour of the human race would come.

This promise ignited the hearts of the patriarchs Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

God wiped out their enemies even in the most extreme of circumstances!

Time and again, God blessed them with judges, kings and prophets. He even provided them a place to worship.

But as the quote goes, “Familiarity breeds contempt!”

Israel, God’s own people no longer delighted in being His distinctive people.

For them, He became a routine.

They began to consider Him of little value.
They allowed their hearts to grow hard… over and over… again and again.

Finally, Jesus, the long-promised Messiah came, the One whom God the Father had sent.

But most of the Jews by then, had grown stubborn and complacent in their ways.

They had no room for One who came to fulfill the Law and the Prophets.

They maltreated the Saviour of the World.

They rejected the Chosen One of God.
They abused the Anointed One of the Lord.

And this led, Jesus to shed tears.

Like a mother…
… whose heart is broken in seeing her child choose wrong ways.
… whose soul is crushed in witnessing her child engaged in misdeeds.
… who cries in agony when her child strays away from the path of goodness.

This story of Jerusalem could well be our own life-story.

We have been specially chosen and loved by the Lord.

He has taken us through many dangers, sicknesses and accidents.
… In times when everything seem lost, He has been our refuge.
… In moments when all seemed totally blank and dark, He has been the glowing light.
… In occasions we felt like quitting life and escaping from realities, He held us in good stead.

But we tend to easily forget all these good deeds and wonders of the Lord.

We fail to be grateful and thankful to the Lord….
…by living a holy and virtuous life.
…by deepening our bond of love and affection with Him
…by translating His graces into deeds of charity and concern for our people.

We instead persecute and torture Him…
…by living a lethargic or unholy or even scandalous life
…by abandoning many of His commandments and the teachings of the Church
…by harming our brothers and sisters and being highly indifferent in situations.

God’s heart, like that of a broken mother weeping for her child, is crying out for us…

We have strayed much!

It’s time to come back to Him

He calls us.
He longs to have us with Him always.
He wants us back in His loving embrace.

As little children, let us run, in sincere repentance, to the welcoming Motherly Heart of our Beloved God.

God Bless! Live Jesus!


Quotable-quote-a-day-with-St Francis de Sales (SFS) – “Bloom where you are planted!”

November 18, 2020 – 33rd Week in Ordinary Time

“Being prepared to take risks in order to make progress in life!”

(Based on Rev 4:1-11 and Lk 19:11-28 – Wednesday of the 33rd Week in Ordinary Time)

A little tortoise was constantly facing a complex of feeling too low in life.

Seeing the various other animals, moving swiftly and speedily…
… the tortoise would very often hide itself in its shell.

It felt that it could never progress in life!

One day, it came across a wise person and sought an advice of how to get the best from life.

The sage – a wise person – replied:
“My little tortoise, always remember that you have been created specifically.
So never feel low or bad about yourself.

And as far as progressing is concerned…
… Always remember: ‘Unless you stick your neck out, you can never progress!”

That was a simple, yet effective piece of advice, isn’t it

Unless the tortoise “stuck its neck out, it could never progress!”

Sticking the neck out of course, meant “taking a risk”…
… but unless that was done, progress was not going to happen.

The same is true for us in our life as well:

Unless we take risks… Unless we “stick out our necks”
… we can never progress!

The Gospel of the Day is a parable of a person who refused “to stick out his neck”…
… and thus not only failed to progress, but ended up on the losing side!

Jesus presents the very-practical “Parable of the Productive Servants”

A nobleman who, before going to a faraway country, entrusts money to his servants with an instruction, “Engage in trade with these, until I return” (Lk 19: 13)

The money given was a “mina”

A mina was a Greek coin.

The lowest level of the Greek Coinage System was the drachma…
…. equal to one day’s wages. (1 Drachma = 1 day’s wages)

One hundred drachmas equalled one Mina (100 Drachmas = 1 Mina).

Therefore, One Mina equalled nearly 100 days of wages (1 Mina = 100 days wages; i.e. nearly 3 months)

With this (fairly huge) amount of money, the Master instructs the servants to “invest”

Investment always means a “sense of risk!”

The parable goes on to say that…
… one of them made another ten (Lk 19: 16)
… the other made another five (Lk 19:18)

These two are greatly rewarded.

The one “who is willing to take risks” always finds life more rewarding and satisfying!

But, its over here, the parable presents the third servant, who decided to be “Mr. Keep it Safe!”

He came back to his master, with an excuse: “Sir, here is your coin” (Lk 19: 20)

He failed to make any investment

He failed to take “any risk”

He refused to “stick out his neck!”

Sticking the neck out of course, meant “taking a risk”…
… but unless that was done, progress was not going to happen.

And that would make him to end up on the losing side!

The Bible is replete with personalities, who would take “risks”…
… and thus emerge successful!

Noah would “take the risk” of listening to God and build the Ark for rescue from the deluge
Abraham would “take the risk” by obeying God and leaving His country and people
Moses would “take the risk” and trust in God to lead the people out of slavery
Jeremiah would “take the risk” of being a prophet despite of several oppositions to his life
Peter would “take the risk” of leaving his fishing profession to be ‘fishers of men’
… and many many more!

They “risked their life” for God – His Will and His Kingdom!

They would “stick out their neck” in progressing in the ways of God!

How about us?

Do we “take risks?”
… the “risk” to trust in God, in spite of the uncertainties of life
… the “risk” to know God has the best plan for us, despite the many hardships we face in life
… the “risk” to believe that God always walks with us, even though we go through the ‘deserts of life’

May we always realize: Unless we take risks… Unless we “stick out our necks”
… we can never progress!

God Bless! Live Jesus!


Quotable-quote-a-day-with-St Francis de Sales (SFS) – “He would never exhort the faithful to persevere…

… if he were not ready to give them the power to do so!”

November 17, 2020 – 33rd Week in Ordinary Time

“Seeking to restore our faith and being revived in His Mercy!”

(Based on Rev 3:1-22 and Lk 19:1-10 – Tuesday of the 33rd Week in Ordinary Time)

There is a story said about a carpenter, who had least botheration about his Christian faith.

His pious and devout wife would often exhort him to return to faith…
… but he cared least!

They would even often have fights over this issue.

Once, he left to the woods, to fell trees.

As he glanced around, he noticed a tree – dead and dry, with its leafless branches embracing the skies.

He said to himself, “That tree I will cut down. For it is dead and dry, fit only to be burned!”

As he got himself ready with the axe, to chop down the tree…
… he heard a voice thundering within him, “Are you not also like this dead tree…. Fit only to be burned?”

He tried to banish away such thoughts…
… but the higher he lifted up the axe to cut the tree, the greater was the voice heard!

He went on to strike the tree a few times…
… but the thought kept flashing in his mind: “Will God ever tell me.. ‘Cut it down… fit only to be burned!”

Eventually, the thoughts became so great, that he fell on his knees…
… and pleaded with God, to receive him back.

The story goes on to say, that he went back to his wife and was reconciled to her…
… and had his faith restored in the Lord…
… revived by the Mercy of God!

Is my life like a dead tree… without spiritual energy and “fit only to be burned”?
… then the Lord today thunders in our hearts: To restore our faith and be revived in His Mercy!

The Gospel of the Day takes us through such a faith-restoring and mercy-experiential incident in the life of a little man – Zacchaeus

The story begins with Jesus coming to Jericho and intending to pass through the town (Lk 19:1)

Jericho has a long history, especially seen in the Old Testament.

Jericho was the first city to be conquered by the Israelites under Joshua. (Josh 6:1-27)

It was surrounded by a huge wall. However, with directives from God & under the leadership of Joshua, the city was laid siege.

On the appointed day, Joshua ordered the people to shout & the walls of the city collapsed and the Israelites destroyed it.

Joshua laid a curse on the one who would rebuild this city.

Thus, Jericho bore the brunt of a curse.

It is to this ‘place of curse’ that Jesus makes his entry.

As Jesus makes his entry to this cursed place, a little man named Zacchaeus climbs & hides himself behind the leaves of a tree.

Now this incident of Jesus entering an accursed city and a man hiding behind the leaves of a tree, has quite striking similarities with another incident, seen at the start of the Bible – the incident in the Garden of Eden (Gen 3)

In the book of Genesis, when Adam and Eve sinned, God moved about in the garden.

But they hid themselves from the Lord God among the trees of the garden (Gen 3: 8)

God comes to a place, which has been now cursed because of sin.
But two persons hide themselves in the trees of the garden.

Interesting similarity, isn’t it?

God comes to a place of curse… the Garden… and two persons (Adam and Eve) hide in the trees.

Jesus comes to a place of curse… the city of Jericho… and one person (Zacchaeus) hides in the trees.

But with the similarity, there are also striking differences…

Adam and Eve hid from God, in order to stay away from God, because of the guilt of sin.

Zacchaeus hid from Jesus, in order to see him better, because of his own complexes.

Adam and Eve were fearful to hear the words of God addressing them.

Zacchaeus was surprised and joyful to hear the words of Jesus addressed to him.

Adam and Eve wanted to remain hiding even after God sought for them in the garden.

Zacchaeus jumped down from the tree after Jesus sought to come to his home.

Is there some similarity of these incidents to my life too?

Am I, like Adam & Eve, hiding from God, because I am scared of Him due to some of the sins which I am unwilling to give up?

Or am I, like Zacchaeus, seeking refuge in the leaves of trees like money, pleasure, evil habits and yet have a desire to see the Lord?

The Lord is gazing at us… like He gazed at Adam and Eve and Zacchaeus.

Am I, like Adam & Eve, fearful to hear the words of God, in the Bible or through the teachings of the Church or the words of other people, because of the pain to get rid of my sinful tendencies and evil practices?

Or am I, like Zacchaeus, joyful to hear God’s words addressed to me, & also ready to make changes for a better spiritual life?

The Lord is addressing each one of us…like He addressed Adam and Eve and Zacchaeus.

Am I, like Adam & Eve, wanting to remain in my sinful and lethargic state of life even though I experience that God’s mercy and compassion is readily available?

Or am I, like Zacchaeus willing to jump down with joy, from the tree of pride, complexes, sin and fear, and welcome the Lord into the home of my life?

The Lord is seeking for us…as He sought Adam and Eve and Zacchaeus.

The Lord is gazing, addressing and seeking for us.

Am I ready to encounter, to listen and to be found by Him?

A Yes to the question, will also mean taking some radical decisions in our life, just like Zacchaeus did…

Giving up of possessions…
Letting go of my undue desire for money, cheap popularity, the riches in my life etc.
Repaying those whom I have cheated…
Forgiving and accepting those whom I hurt, whom I don’t like, whom I am not in good terms etc.

Zacchaeus was a despised man.
… because of his short stature.
… because as a tax collector, he worked for the enemy-government and would cheat and defraud people.
… because Jesus came to his house – a house of a sinner.

But the encounter with Jesus made him a transformed person

The encounter with Jesus made him to go beyond all complexes and filled him with deep joy!

This same transformation is at hand for us…

Let, us, learn from the Little Man and make significant changes in our life, in order to experience the magnanimous wonders and graces from our Big God!

Let the words of Jesus addressed to the Church at Laodicea be strongly reflected by all of us:
“I know your works: you are neither cold nor hot. Would that you were cold or hot! So, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spew you out of my mouth.

For you say, I am rich, I have prospered, and I need nothing; not knowing that you are wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked.
Therefore I counsel you to buy from me gold refined by fire, that you may be rich, and white garments to clothe you and to keep the shame of your nakedness from being seen, and salve to anoint your eyes, that you may see.
Those whom I love, I reprove and chasten; so be zealous and repent.
Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if any one hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.” (Rev 3:15-20)

Maybe our life is like a dead tree… without spiritual energy and “fit only to be burned”!

The Lord today thunders in our hearts: To restore our faith and be revived in His Mercy!

God Bless! Live Jesus!


Quotable-quote-a-day-with-St Francis de Sales (SFS) – “Do not become upset when difficulty come your way.

Laugh at its face and know…

… that you are in the Hands of God!”

November 16, 2020 – 33rd Week in Ordinary Time

“Being ready to change the ‘Disappointments’ in our life to Appointments with the Lord!”

(Based on Rev 1:1-4, 2:1-5a and Lk 18:35-43 – Monday of the 33rd Week in Ordinary Time)

An elderly person, who was known to be very joyful and optimistic in life, was once asked by his little nephew: “Uncle, what is the secret of your happiness?

Don’t you ever have disappointments?”

The uncle looked at the little lad and responded:
“Child… life has taught me to trust in God above all, and know that His Hand is there with me, at all times.

When Disappointment comes to me, all that I do is:
Change a letter!

The ‘D’ in Disappointment has to be made ‘H’

Thus, every Disappointment, becomes HIS-Appointment!
And I experience His Providence with me, always!”

That’s truly beautiful, isn’t it?

Are we ready to change the ‘Disappointments’ in our life to ‘Hisappointments’…
… Appointments with the Lord?”

Every person in the world faces moments of disappointments and darkness.

Some of us get encompassed by it.
Some of us get dejected by it.

The Gospel of Day presents a blind man, who faced immense darkness, but did not allow to get encompassed or dejected by it…
.. rather changed, the Disappointment into His-appointment!

The story of the Blind Beggar, healed by Jesus is an incident recorded in all the three Synoptic Gospels (Matthew, Mark and Luke).

If we look at this incident in each of their accounts, we find that it is as if, this story has been filmed from three different cameras.

It could be like the same news story, but carried out on channel A, channel B and channel C.

The camera of each channel has picked up the story at a different angle.

The meaning and message of the life of Jesus is inexhaustible and the Holy Spirit allows the Gospel writers to present it from different perspectives and angles.

St Luke’s camera shows us that Jesus is entering Jericho when the blind beggar begins to call out. But St Mark’s camera shows us that the healing took place, not as Jesus was entering Jericho, but as Jesus was leaving the place (Mk 10:46)

Mark names him as Bartimaeus. Luke doesn’t name him.

How could we reconcile this geographical fact of “apparent” difference?
Was Jesus coming out of or going into Jericho?

There could be one way of understanding this…

Jericho was one of the oldest cities in the world and it has been continuously occupied for thousands of years.

During the time of Christ, however, King Herod ordered a new business and administration centre to be set up, a few miles away from the original city. This would be called as the New Jericho.

Eventually, the old and the new Jericho would merge.

An ideal spot for begging was to be on the road between the old and new city, where there would be a frequent passage of travelers especially the business people.

So, in that sense, Jesus was both leaving Jericho and going to Jericho: He was leaving the old site and going to the new one.

Then comes along St Matthew’s camera which shows us that there were two blind beggars that were healed (Mt 20:30), whereas the camera of St Mark and St Luke had only done a close shot of the one.

How could we reconcile this numerical fact of “apparent” difference?

There could be one way of understanding this…

For Mark and Luke, Bartimaeus was the main character in the story and was therefore the sole focus. Perhaps Bartimaeus was known to them but the other man was a stranger to them.

The fact that only one man is recorded as speaking doesn’t mean there was only one man. It simply means Mark & Luke identified only one man, Bartimaeus speaking. Matthew refers to both of them calling out to Jesus, clearly indicating there were two men.

In any case, to focus on these minor details to the exclusion of all else, would be to miss the point of the story.

The star recipient in the story – the Blind Beggar – is the one who overcomes many hurdles and obstacles in his life to obtain the glorious healing from the Lord.

What were some of these hurdles?

  1. He had to overcome the hurdle of “being blamed”

This blind man lived at a time when sicknesses were often traced to a life of sinfulness.

The man probably lived constantly under the shadow of this hurdle of “being blamed”.
He was probably blamed that he was blind because he or his ancestors had sinned greatly and was being “punished”.

But the man overcomes this “hurdle of being blamed” and finds the light of Jesus.

Am I in need of overcoming this guilt and shame of “being blamed”?

  1. He had to overcome the hurdle of ” being depressed and hopeless“

It is a pitiful fact to being a beggar, lying pathetically, sitting in his filthy, dirty rags on the side of the road. >> The fact of his being blind made things even more worse.

Life was highly cruel on him and the darkness of hopelessness clouded him.

But he overcomes this “hurdle of being depressed and hopeless” and encounters the glow of Jesus.

Am I in need of overcoming this pain and sadness of being depressed and hopeless”?

  1. He had to overcome the hurdle of “discouragement and being put-down”

The crowd had become very hostile to the blind beggar, who wanted to meet Jesus and rebuked and shouted at him to be silent.

He had felt a ray of hope in Jesus, but the crowd considered him as a botheration and sought to suppress him.

But the man overcomes this hurdle of “discouragement and being put-down” and experiences the illumination of Jesus.

Am I in need of overcoming the crushing and burdensome factors of “discouragement and being put-down”?

The blind man shows us the way today, to overcoming hurdles…
…with an eager longing, a resolute determination and commendable humility.

Is my life blind, surrounded by the darkness of many hurdles? The Lord of Light is passing by…

Let’s raise our voices.

Let’s lift up our hearts.
Let’s jump over the hurdles!
“Jesus, Son of David…have mercy on me!”

Let the strong words of Jesus addressed in the Book of Revelations spruce up our faith and commitment:
“I know you are enduring patiently and bearing up for my name’s sake, and you have not grown weary.

But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first.
Remember then from what you have fallen, repent and do the works you did at first. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent!” (Rev 2:3-5)

Let the words of St Margaret of Scotland – an exemplary queen and mother, the saint of the Saint – be an inspiration: “I thank You, Almighty God, for sending me so great a sorrow, to purify me from my sins!”

Yes… life surely brings very often disappointments!

But with trust in the Lord and confidence in His Providence, let us…
‘Change a letter!…
… thus making ‘every Disappointment, as HIS-Appointment!’

God Bless! Live Jesus!


Quotable-quote-a-day-with-St Francis de Sales (SFS) – “During the night, we must wait for the light!”

November 15, 2020 – 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time

“Making the best use of the ‘seeds’ of good things given to all of us and ‘investing these seeds’ in order to derive its potential blessings!”

(Based on Prov 31:10-13, 19-20, 30-31, 1 Thess 5:1-6 and Mt 25:14-30 – 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time)

A familiar story, in various versions goes thus….

A lady came up to a shop which had the name “Everything your heart desires, is available here”

The curious lady went to the shopkeeper and asked: “I want peace of mind and love and happiness and wisdom and freedom from fear”

The shopkeeper, in return, smiled and said: “Madam, thank you for expressing your desire. But please do note: I sell only seeds, not fruits!”

Such is the logic in our Christian Life as well.

God has gifted the “seeds” of good things to all of us….
But…
… do we “sow these seeds” to produce good fruits?
… do we “invest these seeds” in order to derive its potential blessings?

The Gospel of the Day – Mt 25:14-30 – presents before us a simple-to-understand and practical-to-follow Parable of the Lord: the Parable of the Talents!

One of the beauty of this Parable is that it is simple, clear and easy to understand.

And its lessons are hard to miss!!

This parable tells what to do while we live in this world and the need to be responsible and dutiful.

The Parable introduces the fact that the servants were judged by the way, they managed the master’s resources.

We learn a very crucial truth from this: All that we have belongs to God!

We need to underline and highlight the word “ALL”

All…
Fully…
Totally…
Everything…
Completely…
… Belongs to GOD!
We own nothing…
We hold no space…
We possess no one…
… All belongs to GOD!
He made them…
… He gave them to us
And one day… He will take them from us again.
Even our life itself is a gift from God!

If only our world and our generation were to grow more and more in this truth…!

How often we hold on to our possessions…
… and go bonkers in preserving and safeguarding them!

How often we seek twisted and distorted ways…
… to acquire more wealth and capture vital status and ranks!

How often we resort to disgraceful and shameful means…
… to win over positions and powers and authority!

How often we play dirty games and indulge in dreadful activities…
… to put down people and go up in dominance!

Another aspect that we find in the parable is the usage of the word “talents”.

Usually, when we hear the word “talents” in English, we tend to think of some natural abilities, like…
… playing the piano
… or being good at some sports
… or being skilled in painting or knowing how to handle computers etc….

In the time of Jesus, however…
… the ‘talent’ was referred to a huge amount of money.

One talent would represent approximately 16½ years of salary for a labourer.

To give a man two talents would equal around 33 years of salary….
To give a man five talents would be like giving him 80 years of salary to invest…

That’s indeed a huge amount, isn’t it?

Imagine, how rich would the Owner himself have been!
(This once again reminds us that the Owner – God – is the Source of ALL… everything in our life!)

What was the criteria in giving different people a particular amount of money?

Each one according to one’s ability

And who made this determination to allocate the amount of money?

The Master himself, according to His wish!

Here’s another truth: God is not obligated to treat us, like he treats anyone else.

He can give us more or He can give us less than others.

Some have more money and talent and opportunity and strength and health and relationships than others.

Others have less money and talent and opportunity and strength and health and relationships!

It’s not about being unlucky.

It’s not about our ill-fate.

The Master…
…has total sovereignty and freedom with what and how much HE wants to give to His people!

This leaves us with a choice:

  1. We can either crib and complain, gripe and grumble about our situation and make excuses and just sit idle!
    OR…
  2. We can accept the given situation we are in – with gratitude – and start from where we are, and do what we can… to the best!

God invites us to be faithful and responsible servants…

The book of Proverbs also gives us a beautiful illustration of the need to sturdy and focussed: “A good wife who can find? She is far more precious than jewels. The heart of her husband trusts in her, and he will have no lack of gain. She does him good, and not harm, all the days of her life.” (Prov 31:10-12)
St Paul reminds us of the greatness of this responsibility that is entrusted to us: “For you are all sons of light and sons of the day; we are not of the night or of darkness. So then let us not sleep, as others do, but let us keep awake and be sober!” (1 Thess 5: 5-6)

Yes…

The Dynamics of Comparison is useless…
… the Tactic of Hard Work is amazing!

The Strategy of Complaining is ineffective…
… the Scheme of Determination is superb!

The Policy of Grumpiness is futile…
… the Approach of Gratefulness is incredible!

The Parable of the Talents is a very Practical Parable that the Lord has offered us!

Yesterday is past…
… tomorrow is the Future.

But Today is a GIFT…
… that’s why, it is called as The PRESENT!

Let’s make this PRESENT, a PLEASENT GIFT to the GREAT GIVER…
… by seeking His Grace and combining it with our hard works and determination!

Let us make the best use of the “seeds” of good things given to all of us and …
… sow these seeds” to produce good fruits!
… “invest these seeds” in order to derive its potential blessings!

God Bless! Live Jesus!


Quotable-quote-a-day-with-St Francis de Sales (SFS) – “I would not even wish that we desire better talent and better judgment because these desires are silly.

They take the place of that desire which we should have to improve our own talent such as it is.
We are not to desire the means of serving God which we do not have.

Instead we are to use faithfully those which we have!”

November 14, 2020 – 32nd Week in Ordinary Time

“Remaining firm and perseverant in our prayer life and becoming a people who reach out in justice and give comfort and consolation to the needy!”

(Based on 3 Jn 5-8 and Lk 18:1-8 – Saturday of the 32nd Week in Ordinary Time)

An interesting incident is mentioned in the life of Jan Paderewski

He was a famous Polish pianist and a pioneer of the solo recital at music concerts.

It is said that when Paderewski was to leave his native Poland to play his first recital in London…
… he asked an influential compatriot to give him a letter of introduction, to a leading figure in Britain’s musical world

This was for any assistance, should anything go amiss.

The letter was handed to him in a sealed envelope.

Paderewski hoped that everything would proceed smoothly and he would not have to use the letter.

Well…
… he did not have to use the letter.

His debut was a great success and he soon began to climb the ladder of success.

Some years later, while going through his papers, he came upon the ‘letter of introduction’ and opened it.

He was surprised to read the content:
“This will introduce Jan Paderewski, who plays the piano, for which he demonstrates no conspicuous (visible/noticeable) talent.”

Life… is often such!

Discouragements lure everywhere
Rejections prowl all around

Do we get bogged down by such discouragements and rejections?

Are we people who bring about discouragement and rejection to people?

The Gospel of the Day is the Parable of the Persistent Widow.

The Parable speaks of a judge and a widow.

The judge is characterized by some features:

He did not fear God.
He did not fear humans.
He was initially adamant in his refusal.

The Widow is characterized by some features:

She had a genuine need.
She was denied justice.
She remained persistent till the end.

We are often in many and true needs.

But we do sometimes find ourselves, a bit depressed at the delays in receiving the answers to our prayers.

The parable encourages and exhorts us to remain persistent in our prayer life and not to get discouraged by God’s delays, which apparently appears as God’s denials.

Yes, God’s delays are certainly not His denials!
God’s pauses are certainly not His refuses!

At the same time, this parable invites us to switch roles:

To see ourselves as the Judge…
… and God as the Widow.

Widows in the first century found themselves at a very sad state.

They were quite literally unprotected. Many became homeless and destitute after the death of their husbands.

Often they were at mercy of cunning men, including some religious leaders who would “devour widows houses” (Mark 12:40)

A widow couldn’t count on anyone to come to her aid.

She represents the hopeless….the unaided…the oppressed.

In Mt 25:35, Jesus identifies Himself with the one who was hungry, thirsty, naked, stranger and the imprisoned.

Jesus in the poor, the hungry, the thirsty, the naked, the stranger and the imprisoned…
… is the hopeless one …the unaided one …the oppressed one.

Jesus, like the widow in the Parable…comes knocking at our door:
Behold I stand at the door, and knock… (Rev 3:20)

As the oppressed and justice-deprived Widow, Jesus, knocks at our door – we, the judges.

What is our reaction and response to the voice of the needy and the helpless?

The cry of the one in pain and suffering reaches our hears…

Do I reach out my heart to them and seek to ease their troubles and hardships?

The moaning of a broken family or a lost teenager or a spoilt child comes to us…

Do I pray for them and help them, in ways possible for me?

The sad tear of the abused or oppressed people with whom we work is seen by us…

Do I get out of my comfort-shell to make them feel comforted and consoled?

The disturbing reports of violence, corruption, injustice in society falls on our senses…

Do I remain indifferent to them and become saturated with such atrocities?

Yes…the widow – the hopeless, the unaided and the oppressed one… keeps knocking at our doors…

As a Judge…
… do I keep refusing?
… do I keep getting irritated?
… do I feel life as a botheration?

Life often has discouragements luring everywhere and rejections prowling all around

Do we get bogged down by such discouragements and rejections?

Are we people who bring about discouragement and rejection to people?

The Parable of the Persistent Widow is certainly a big lesson to remain firm and perseverant in our prayer life.

And when looked from another perspective is also a big challenge to become a people who reach out in justice and give comfort and consolation to the needy.

Knock….knock…

Do we hear the knock, seeking for help?

Let us seek the intercession of St Gertrude the Great – the great “Nuptial Mystic” (seeing herself as the bride of Christ) – on her feast day.

In a vision on the feast of John the Evangelist, as she rested her head near Jesus’ wound on His side, and hearing the beating of His heart, she asked St. John, “Why is it, O beloved of God, that you who rested on His bosom at the Last Supper have said nothing of what you experienced then?”
St John told her “It was my task to present to the first age of the Church the doctrine of the Word made flesh which no human intellect can ever fully comprehend. The eloquence of that sweet beating of His Heart is reserved for the last age…
… in order that the world grown cold and torpid may be set on fire with the love of God!”

Let us be inspired by her life and in this month of November – dedicated specially for praying for the Faithful Departed – join with St Gertrude in praying:
“Eternal Father, I offer You the Most Precious Blood of Thy Divine Son, Jesus Christ, in union with the Masses said throughout the world today, for all the Holy Souls in Purgatory, for sinners everywhere, those in the Universal Church, in my home, and in my family!”

God Bless! Live Jesus!


Quotable-quote-a-day-with-St Francis de Sales (SFS) – “What we need is a cup of understanding, a barrel of love, and an ocean of patience!”

November 13, 2020 – 32nd Week in Ordinary Time

“Getting our priorities right, and in humility, seeking to protect ‘the suitcases of our souls!’”

(Based on 2 Jn 1:4-9 and Lk 17:26-37 – Friday of the 32nd Week in Ordinary Time)

A humorous story is told of a heavy-weight boxer who would greatly brag about his prowess…
… and speak of how he would “he would conquer the world!”

It is said that one day, he came to a big city with two huge suitcases.
As he got down the bus, putting the suitcases down, he looked up to the tall building tower and exclaimed: “I will conquer this city!”

When he looked down, however…
… the suitcases were gone!

Very often, our lives are such…

We dream of conquering the entire world…
… but often fail to even have a control on ourselves!

We become “so worldly” that we fail to give heed “to the world to come!”

We become so occupied with the concerns of our earthly existence that sometimes we “forget about our Heavenly priorities!”

The Gospel of the Day presents Jesus highlighting this essential element of Christian living: Being in the world, but living out of the world, with eyes firmly set on heavenly realms.

Jesus says, “Whoever seeks to gain his life, will lose it, but whoever loses his life, will preserve it” (Lk 17:33)

Very often our lives get too attached to material riches and attachments.

We fall prey to seeking great honour and fame in being a Christian…
… but are unable to grasp the fact that ‘to be a Christian is to be living a life of simplicity’.

We yield to temptations of being obsessed to seek power and positions of futile vanity…
… and fail time and again to live up to the Christian virtues of humility and modesty

We often become victims of engaging in dirty politics and authority-grabbing games…
… and become an anti-witness to the Lord who ‘came to serve, rather than be served’

We need to give heed to the words of the Lord who prayed that “we are in the world, but do not belong to this world” (Jn 17: 15)

A Christian life ought to be hallmarked by detachment and separation…
… detachment from too much of worldly distractions and vain glory
… separation from sinful ways and evil tendencies

It ought to be radiated with total focus and complete dedication…
… total focus on the Lord who ‘walked the talk’ by giving up His life in service
… complete dedication to the Kingdom of God which calls for a humble way of life

The world today is being ‘gripped in sin’, “as it was in the days of Noah” (Lk 17:26)

We need to open our eyes to realize the warning given by the Lord and be ‘on the watch’… … after the example of the destruction of the sinful city of Sodom.

Perhaps our own life… or our family… or our community… our society…
… is resembling the city of Sodom

There is much drunkenness in worldly pleasures!
There is much ‘eating and consumption’ of corrupt practices!
There is much neglect of honest ways and of truthful conduct!
There is much enjoyment of bad, inhuman and cruel behaviours!

Let us deepen…
… our faith in the Lord
… our love for the Kingdom
… and our detachment from riches

St John prompts us: “Look to yourselves, that you may not lose what you have worked for, but may win a full reward!” (2 Jn 4:8)

We are reminded today that as Christians, we are people…
… who live in the world, yet are called to be out of the world.
… who live amidst possibilities of wealth, yet are called to be detached from them.
… who live with the prospect of gaining immense power, yet are exhorted to not be attached

We may be often tempted “to conquer the world and the city”…
… but let’s get our priorities right, and in humility, seek to first protect “the suitcases of our souls!”

Let us seek the intercession of the Saint of the Day – St Frances Xavier Cabrini (the first naturalized citizen of the United States to be canonized by the Roman Catholic Church, on July 7, 1946) – and be inspired by her life and words…

“Rest?” We will have all eternity in which to rest. Now let us work.”
“Pray, pray always, and ask unceasingly for the Spirit of Prayer. The Spirit of Prayer means praying in accordance with the Divine good pleasure, willing only what God wills.
… It means that we have our minds fixed on prayer at all times, in all places, working, walking, eating, speaking, suffering; habitually and always.”

God Bless! Live Jesus!


Quotable-quote-a-day-with-St Francis de Sales (SFS) – “May the favorable wind of celestial inspirations ever fill your vessel’s sails fuller and fuller…

… and make you happily arrive at the port of Holy Eternity!”

November 12, 2020 – 32nd Week in Ordinary Time

“Looking into the ‘wells of our lives and of others,’ seeing the Presence of the Lord and becoming a ‘Kingdom People’”

(Based on Philemon 7-20 and Lk 17:20-25 – Thursday of the 32nd Week in Ordinary Time)

A simple story is told of a little girl who accompanied her grandfather to fetch water from the well.

After having drawn water, as the bucket was lowered and kept on the ground, the little girl asked her grandfather: “Grandpa, where does God live?”

The old man, lifted up the girl, and held her over the open well and asked: “What do you see?”

The excited girl, looked deep into the well and seeing her reflection exclaimed: “I see myself”
“That’s where God lives,” said the wise grandfather “God lives in you!”

Are we aware that each of one of us is an abode of the “Presence of the Lord?”

Do we mend our lives accordingly…
… and seek to live holier and saintly lives?

Our Christian lives must be lived eagerly and enthusiastically to nurture and promote the Kingdom of God…
… and live as citizens, worthy of a King Who is all-holy and all-honest!

Are we ready to collaborate with Jesus, to infuse a greater spirit of the Kingdom of God in this world …
… and to promote the reach and spread of the Kingdom of God?

The Gospel of the Day is a teaching on the Kingdom of God.

The Pharisees ask “when” the kingdom will come (Lk 17:20)

Jesus however explains “how” the Kingdom will come (17:22-35)

Jesus does not give an answer to the question of the Pharisees.

Rather, He makes to realize what should be the proper question.

It’s the style and technique of the Lord to get right the priorities and focus in life!

The people searched for Jesus after the miracle of the multiplication of loaves…

Jesus sets right their intentions by speaking of the need to hunger for the bread of life (Jn 6)

The disciples of John came to clarify whether Jesus was indeed the Messiah to come…

Jesus sets right their focus by turning their attention to all His signs and deeds (Lk 7:19ff)

The two disciples, James and John, sought for privileged places in Jesus’ future reign…

Jesus sets right their priorities by exhorting them to grow rather in humility and service (Mk 10: 35-45)

Nicodemus, in his encounter with Jesus, remained on peripheral questions and doubts…

Jesus sets right his doubts by calling his attention on living a life in the Spirit and being born anew spiritually (Jn 3: 1-21)

The Lord loves to challenge our doubts, theories & even convictions…in order to be in harmony with the priorities of the Kingdom.

Am I willing to allow the Lord to work in me to change some of my thinking patterns, that would be in accord to His Will?
Am I flexible to let the Lord to mould and shape my lifestyle and thus be in tune with the focus of His Kingdom?

The “Kingdom of God” is an oft-repeated phrase in the New Testament and especially in the Gospels.

What is the Kingdom of God?

A kingdom normally brings to picture a geographical territory, with its clear-cut boundaries and its rulers and citizens.

The Kingdom of God, is however, quite different!

The Kingdom of God is not a geographical dominion like worldly kingdoms!

The Kingdom of God is a spiritual reality where God’s Will is done.
It is a person; it is He – Jesus!
“Jesus leads people to realize the overwhelming fact that in Him, God is present among them and that He is God’s presence…” (from the book, “Jesus of Nazareth – Part I” by Pope Benedict XVI)

The Pharisees who asked Jesus on “when” the Kingdom would come, were probably expecting an external sort of a Kingdom.

They probably expected a Kingdom which would overturn and overthrow the Roman Government.

But Jesus clarifies the nature of this Kingdom…

He speaks of a Kingdom which is much more internal & spiritual, and whose impact would be felt and experienced in the external world.

One experiences the Kingdom of Heaven first in one’s inner life…and this is manifested in one’s external lifestyles…

The Samaritan Woman experienced the power of the Kingdom of God within herself, when she spoke to Jesus, the fountain of life…

And this experience of the Kingdom led her to proclaim the name of Jesus to all her villagers & bring many to the saving fold of the Lord.

The Disciples experienced the power of the Kingdom of God within them, when the Holy Spirit descended on them…

And this experience of the Kingdom was manifested in their bold and powerful witnessing life!

St Paul experienced the force of the Kingdom of God within him, when he encountered the Risen Lord on the way to Damascus…

And this experience of the Kingdom was displayed by him through his passionate life of preaching and missionary works.

In the Prayer, the Our Father, we pray:
“Thy Kingdom Come,
Thy Will be Done…”

The Kingdom of God is, where the Will of God is fulfilled.

The question arises before us:
Is the Kingdom of God here?

Or is the Kingdom yet to come?

This is where we speak of the concept of “Already and not yet”
The Kingdom of God is already here, but not yet!

The Kingdom of God already reigns now, but not yet, in its fullness!

As St Paul says in 1 Cor 13: 12, “At present, we see indistinctly, as in a mirror, but then face to face. At present, I know partially; then I shall know fully, as I am fully known”.

Do I experience the Kingdom of God in my life?

The Kingdom of God is not a matter of food and drink, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit (Rom 14:17)

I need to experience the joy and the peace of the Lord in my life…
I need to place the priorities of God over all else in my life…

That’s the Kingdom of God.

That’s the Reign of God.

We are invited today “to radiate heaven on our faces”!

May our Christian lives be lived eagerly and enthusiastically to nurture and promote the Kingdom of God…
… and thus live as citizens, worthy of a King Who is all-holy and all-honest!

Looking into the “wells of our lives and of others,” may we see the Presence of the Lord…
… and thus may we become a “Kingdom People!!

God Bless! Live Jesus!


Quotable-quote-a-day-with-St Francis de Sales (SFS) – “See, this Divine Lover is at the gate.

He does not merely knock, but He remains there knocking.

He calls to the soul!”